Tag Archives: English Country Homes

English Country Estates: Aberdyfi, Western Wales

Owned by the vendors for 20 years or more, elegant, Edwardian Plas Penhelig, was built in 1908. It stands in just under 12½ acres of gardens, paddocks and woodland and boasts ‘six different views over the picturesque Dyfi estuary’.

Penny Churchill, July 14, 2021

Thanks to the waters of the Gulf Stream, rare plants and flowers flourish in Plas Penhelig’s sheltered valley, where the hillside is planted with a mass of shrubs, flowers and trees—from peonies and azaleas to camellias, magnolias, lavender, laburnum, lilac trees and a monkey puzzle.

Read and see more at Country Life Magazine

English Country Homes: Avon Court, Alveston

Everything about Avon Court has a opulent yet whimsical air about it — from the large wrought iron entrance gates, to the mature Willow tree in the garden that leads down to a mooring on a private stretch of river.

Annunciata Elwes, July 12, 2021

Avon Court’s glorious setting on a bend of the Avon — with private frontage, a mooring beside a lovely willow and dipping opportunities through the bull rushes on hot days — is hard to beat.

Read more

English Country Estates: Yarner House – Dartmoor

Yarner House and the adjoining Yarner Wood, a 365-acre block of ancient woodland managed by Natural England as part of the East Dartmoor National Nature Reserve, were both once part of the manor of Bovey Tracey granted by William the Conqueror to Geoffrey de Mowbray, Bishop of Coutances.

Penny Churchill June 22, 2021

On de Mowbray’s death in 1093, his nephew, Robert Mowbray, Earl of Northumberland, inherited, but later defied the king, which led to the seizure of his estates in 1095.

Over time, ownership of the Bovey Tracey estates reverted to the Crown as favourites came and went, until, in the 16th century, a succession of costly wars left Tudor monarchs strapped for cash.

Elizabeth I began to sell off Crown properties and, in 1578, the Yarner estate was bought by Gregory Sprint, a canny lawyer with good Court connections, who swiftly resold it at a profit.

Read more at Country Life Magazine

English Country Homes: 17th-Century Urchfont Manor In Wiltshire, UK

Within a few years of buying Urchfont Manor in 2013, Chris Legg and Eleanor Jones, with the help of a friend, landscape architect Paul Gazerwitz, had given their home a new vista that unites house and garden, as well as evoking the formal Baroque of the house’s late-17th-century past.

George Plumptre June 12, 2021

Their aim was to balance historical integrity with the development of a new garden. Continuity would be kept by preserving the garden’s bones, such as the walled garden and the fine trees beyond open lawn to the south and east. Work began on the rectangular walled kitchen garden.

The architecture on this side of the house is engagingly uneven and this is picked up in the new garden, which is neat and formal, but appropriately domestic in scale. The kitchen garden has been laid out afresh, with 16 rectangular patches divided by narrow gravel paths and with a square of four greengages in the centre. Crops are rotated and, every year, one bed celebrates an unusual plant, such as borlotti beans or root ginger. Elsewhere are nurtured asparagus and strawberry beds and a fruit cage with raspberries and gooseberries.

Read more at Country Life Magazine

English Country Homes: Sortridge Manor In Dartmoor National Park

Over in West Devon, the village of Horrabridge in the Dartmoor National Park, four miles south of Tavistock, grew up around an ancient crossing over the fast-flowing River Walkham, a famous salmon river, its 15th-century bridge one of the oldest in Devon.

In the late 1800s/early 1900s, the south wing of the original Elizabethan building was rebuilt after ‘three successive fires’ destroyed ‘the hall and one wing’.

In the late 1800s, three sisters sold the 400-acre Sortridge estate to a Plymouth stockbroker who immediately sold it again in lots, thereby doubling his money.

The manor and 140 acres of land were bought by Col Marwood Tucker, whose widow sold the property to George Porter Rogers in 1955. In November 1961, Mr Rogers sold the manor with three acres of grounds for £5,500 to Cmdr C. R. Smythe, who sold it in turn to Cmdr Stubley.

Read and see more

English Country Estates: ‘Tormarton Court’ In Badminton, Cotswolds

There is no better address in the Cotswolds than that of the Duke of Beaufort’s Badminton estate in south-west Gloucestershire.

The property originally dates from the 16th century, with alterations from the 17th and 18th centuries, but the present house is largely based on the remodelling that took place in 1812 for the Duke of Beaufort’s son, Lord William Somerset, who was rector of St Mary Magdalene Church that stands opposite the former rectory.

Read more

English Country Homes: Little Wolford Manor, Cotswolds, Warwickshire

According to its Historic England listing, Little Wolford Manor dates from the late 15th or early 16th century, and although there have been 16th-, 17th- and 20th-century additions, Little Wolford Manor still follows the original medieval plan, its focal point being the great hall with its vaulted roof and hammer beams, minstrels’ gallery and huge fireplace.

Penny Churchill, May 16, 2021

An April 1957 piece in the now defunct The Antique Collector describes Little Wolford Manor, in the timeless timeless south Warwickshire village of Little Wolford, as a house ‘of truest Cotswold type… a small gem of Cotswold rural craftsmanship with many well-preserved features in wood as well as in stone’.

Read more

English Country Homes: The Old Rectory Near Beeston, North Norfolk

Mixing the right amount of luxury and comfort with a Shakespearean inspired garden, The Old Rectory near Beeston in north Norfolk has a charming moat that surrounds three-quarters of the property, a Willow tree that frames the water and a wooden Monet-style bridge that crosses the moat?

Beeston is a town in Nottinghamshire, England, 3.4 miles south-west of Nottingham city centre. To the immediate north-east is the University of Nottingham’s main campus, University Park. 

Read more

English Estates: ‘Heath House’ – Staffordshire

Leave your wellies at the door. This 19th Century farm in rural Staffordshire looks less farm, more Downton Abbey. Sitting in a cool 404 acres of land, The Heath House Estate is palatial in all aspects (with not a stray chicken in sight).

It’s hard to know where to begin with a property of this magnitude. The main house (could we try the world ‘palace’?) is a spectacular Grade II-listed, Tudor Gothic mansion, designed and built by Thomas Johnson of Litchfield. With five reception rooms, 14 bedrooms, two flats and a service wing, you’re certainly not short on space.

The main house boasts tall, ornate ceilings, beautiful fireplaces and large, grand rooms, and is not hard to see why this property is listed due to its historical and architectural importance.

Read more

English Country Homes: ‘Merfield House In Rode’

Built at the height of the wool trade, Merfield House, a spectacular Georgian house stands in 32 acres of land in the pretty village of Rode, between Bath and Frome.

The picturesque village of Rode on Somerset’s eastern border, 10 miles south of Bath and five miles north-east of Frome, is one of a series of ancient wool villages that line the banks of the River Frome. The river meanders along a tree-lined channel to the west of the village, with a historically important crossing-point at Rode Bridge and, over the centuries, it has been the life-blood of the area.

Read more